A claim that Tony Blair warned Donald Trump’s aides UK intelligence may have spied on him is “categorically absurd”, the former PM’s office says.
A new book says Mr Blair had shared a “juicy rumour” with the son-in-law of the US president, Jared Kushner, that campaign staff, “possibly even Trump himself”, had been under surveillance.
He is said to have been “angling” for a post-election Middle East adviser role.
Mr Blair’s office said the allegations “are a complete fabrication”.
A spokeswoman added they “have no basis in reality and are simply untrue”.
She is quoted in the Times, which first reported the story, as saying Mr Blair made no pitch to be Mr Trump’s Middle East envoy.
The account of an alleged meeting between Mr Blair, Mr Kushner and a senior aide at the White House in February 2017, the month after the presidential inauguration, is contained in the book by journalist Michael Wolff and reported in the Times.
According to Mr Wolff’s account, in Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, Mr Blair shared the rumour that, during the election, British intelligence “had had the Trump campaign staff under surveillance, monitoring its telephone calls and other communications”.
The former PM is reported to have given the impression that Barack Obama’s administration had hinted that such surveillance would be helpful.
Last March the US TV channel Fox News carried an unsubstantiated claim that UK intelligence services could have been involved in an alleged spying operation on Trump Tower in New York.
The allegation was repeated by the then-White House press secretary Sean Spicer, prompting a rare on-the-record response from Britain’s intelligence chiefs.
The UK’s spy agency GCHQ said the claims “should be ignored, describing them as “nonsense” and “utterly ridiculous”.